Written by Christina — Interning in Malawi
Lakhulani nafe mbuye x 3
Ana any timvera
The lyrics translate to, “speak to us Lord, your children are listening.” It’s a simple four line chorus in Chichewa, one of the native languages in Malawi, and if you’ll excuse my Gen Z jargon, it lives in my head rent free.
One of my primary goals of interning in Malawi this summer is to learn more about the church outside of America. I’ve been very blessed to have been able to both observe how Malawians gather together and to participate in worship with them through song and dance. Something that I’ve noticed is that their tradition tends to be more lively and interactive than ours. In almost every song, people will clap, sway, make arm movements, and shuffle their feet with the beat. This ends up creating a sound I would equate to that of a snare drum due to the snare’s solid thump and its crisp timbre. Therefore, although there may or may not be any instruments involved in worship, they definitely have the spirit (pun intended). Also, worship leaders often interact with the congregation in a call and response fashion where they will sing a line, and the rest of us will repeat it. I can’t say that my Chichewa’s any good, but it has certainly helped me be able to participate a tad bit more. All in all, their confidence in belting out worship songs and grooving to the rhythm inspires me to be similarly unashamed of how I sound and look while praising God. To Him be all the glory!